Banks and councils continue to earn their places as our society’s new pariahs, judging by recent articles in our newspapers.

Concern over the banks behaviour in accepting billions of pounds of public money and then refusing to lend it out has led to the setting up of a new watchdog, a “lending panel”. According to the loan advice website “The banks have played a major role in creating this crisis and are making sure customers pay the price for their mistakes”. According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders more than 120 houses a day are currently being repossessed, with the figure expected to “significantly increase” in 2009. (See also BANKERS CHARITY – Charity Matters Issue 15, November 2008).

Meanwhile on the council front the Home Office has admitted that the scale of snooping is undermining public support for the anti terrorism law that is being misused to do it, a bad example that was set by our government at their party conference a few years back when it was misused to deal with legitimate protest. Since then the law has been misused to spy on dog fouling, rubbish bin breaches, paper boys not having work permits and nurseries unlawfully selling pot plants, none of which have anything to do with terrorism.

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